330 2nd Avenue South| 420
Minneapolis | Minnesota | 55401
2015 Legislative Recap
The regular 2015 legislative session has come to an end and it is almost certain that Governor Dayton will convene a special session. While we are pleased to have achieved some of our policy goals, we are disappointed that this year truly turned out to be a session of missed opportunities to protect our environment and safeguard public health.
Despite the disappointment, the legislature acted favorably on the Firefighter and Children’s Health Protection Act, a bill that requires a study on the effects of six flame retardants by January, 2016 and bans four of the most toxic flame retardants from being used in upholstered furniture and children’s products. The legislature also approved $1 million in funding for Forever Green, an initiative to accelerate development of cover crops and perennial crops that protect water quality and enhance wildlife habitat. We also helped pass favorable language for the Buffer Initiative, a policy that will protect our water resources by requiring a 50 foot buffer for public waters by November 2017 and a 16.5 foot buffer for public ditches by November, 2018. Read more.
Did you know the hand soap, toothpaste or facial scrub you are using may contain small plastic pellets that are contaminating our water? Many of us are unknowingly rubbing small plastic particles all over our skin and gums when we use personal care products containing microbeads. Added to soaps and other products as exfoliants or for decoration, microbeads are made of the same plastics used in pop bottles and garbage bags. When we wash our face or brush our teeth with microbead containing products, the microbeads are washed down the drain into wastewater treatment facilities. This isn’t a small amount of plastic either. Microbead products have been found to contain up to 360,000 beads in one product alone. Due to their small size, many of these plastics can’t be filtered out during treatment and end up in our water.
Minnesota has been a national leader in protecting public health from toxic chemicals. In just eight years we’ve passed nine policies that protect families from BPA, formaldehyde, mercury and other toxins. Our ability to continue this leadership is under threat. Tell your Senators to make sure Minnesota retains this right.
Did you know the shampoo, cleaner, or laundry detergent you wash down the drain can harm your health and the health of our water?
Find out how these chemicals are making their way from our products into our bodies and water
Learn steps you can take to reduce your exposure and protect your health and our water
The energy we use in Minnesota is directly connected to the quantity and quality of our water. Energy production is the largest consumer of water in the state and the old ways of generating power which rely on burning fossil fuels or nuclear fission harm our health and our environment.
Aquatic invasive species (AIS) are not just a nuisance when they reach Minnesota’s water but are a significant economic, safety and water quality threat. The most effective and feasible approach is to prevent their introduction. Clean Water Action is working on multiple fronts to prevent the next invaders from reaching our waters. Learn what you can do to help.